Chapter 5 – True Colors

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The shop that Kasha recommended,

‘The Crude Dancer’ was on a side road joining the main street. Restaurant during the day, seemed to become a pub at night.
Since Hifumi could not read, Kasha made a suitable order of a meat dish and salad.
After waiting for about 10 minutes, what came over was a platter of fresh vegetables and a meat dish that looked like lamb chops cooked in tomato-like sauce.
「 Quite delicious. You seem to know some good shops. 」
Stuffing food in his mouth, Hifumi nodded at Kasha and Origa sitting opposite him. Both of them were eating a stew-like dish with bread.
「 Right? Though there aren’t too many people here, the food is good… 」 (Kasha )
「 Don’t make noise while eating. It’s bad manners. 」
Like in the previous world, there were forks and knives, the food was delicious, though its origin was unknown. Hifumi was secretly relieved that the meals in this world were suitable.
As it is, sitting with slaves to eat a meal is considered extremely degrading, whats more, giving the slaves rough cereals while sitting on the floor was the norm. But Hifumi made the two sit side by side and order whatever they wanted.
Hifumi didn’t care about custom, and stood by his own standards.
「 Gu…. Anyway, before, the explanation about that thing? 」
「 What thing? 」
Looking around and confirming that no one was nearby, Kasha asked
「 Being chased by the royal family, just what did you do…. 」
「 Ah, I killed some Knights and cut the King’s head off. A while ago. 」

From the very beginning, Hifumi had no intention of concealing or deceiving his origin and events in the castle.
He followed his own path, causing trouble and danger, so the result of his choices was natural. Moreover, he had decided that he would not be bound to anything in the future, and would live freely, according to his own wishes.

Ah well, it appears as though my strength can cut down and confront any obstacles.
Seems like I can wander about enjoying life…

Being told about the tragedy in the castle as though unimportant, Kasha and Origa lost their appetites.
They were in doubt but asked when they saw Hifumi continue with his meal.
「 Is that fine? 」
Origa asked timidly.
「 Though I don’t doubt it, if the story is true, then Knights and soldiers will soon be coming after us…. 」
「 Before that, I left the castle. 」
While drinking the tea that came after the meal, Hifumi turned his gaze to a table a little away from them. Two men who came in after Hifumi were eating while talking about something.
「 From the castle, the princess sent me out. That guy should understand that he is no match for me, a Knight. Simply chasing, not arresting or killing, he is lucky to just be observed. 」

Hifumi calmly rose from his table, walking over to the duo’s table, he affably said.
「 Good work, guys. 」
「 Wh-What do you… 」
The men were extremely surprised, backing away a little.
Quickly sitting down on the newly-vacated space, Hifumi says with a smile,
「 We met at he castle a while ago. Observation duties, is it. 」
To Hifumi’s words, the men held their breath.
「 Though I am not good at remembering faces, I’m good at remembering bodies. 」

(TN: *holds head* …. We even had a serious mood going…)

Hifumi tapped the table with his forefinger while saying lines that could be heavily misunderstood.
According to Hifumi, the two men were Knights who happened to be present at the killing site. The two people who survived, were disguised as ordinary people and were observing Hifumi.

Their instructions were simple: Observe and report. They were ordered not to raise a hand, no matter what. On being contacted by their observation target, they were covered with a cold sweat, why, they did not know.

「 Ah well, it is impossible for those employed in the castle to do this kind of espionage work. This should be left to the professionals. There is still a long way to go for the sweet oujousama. 」

Actually this was a big misunderstanding. The third Knights corps, to which the two men belonged, only gathered intelligence within the castle and within range of the general citizen’s districts, for this reason, events within the castle are taken care of.
Both men were experienced intelligence officers and did not think they would be seen through easily without their full-body armours.

「 You don’t need to be nervous. If you are not hostile to me, I don’t particularly mind. The princess’ earnestness has been conveyed. 」
On hearing that their enemy had no intention of attacking, both men were relieved.
「 I am not a heinous person, nor a serial killer. I don’t kill people randomly, be relieved. 」

Even if you are not a scoundrel, aren’t you the bad guy here!

Holding down a tsukkomi the two Knights dropped their gazes to the table, like children being scolded.

「 Anyway, the other people are unacceptable. I have not seen those guys, nevertheless I can feel their killing intent towards me, unlike you. 」
「 W-Wait, other guys? Even though the observers today are supposed to be just us…. 」
Hifumi saw through the princess’ subordinates completely, figuring out the country’s intelligence level.

「 A different team, I guess. Unlike you fellows that followed me from the castle, those guys followed me from the slave shop. 」

Shocked at having been noticed since the beginning, leaving that aside, in front of them was an absolutely untouchable man, attempting something would be a big problem. Though the events within the castle had not been leaked due to the gag order, but if the incident was to be reproduced in the town….. just imagining it is frightening.
Besides, it would be a problem if people of the castle were concerned. If the retaliation went to the Royalty, the future of the country would be in doubt.

「 Gordon, tell the commander the situation immediately, and call support. 」
「 R-Roger! Excuse me! 」

Receiving the short instructions from his superior, the young man unconsciously lowered his head towards Hifumi and ran off. The remaining man’s face was bitter.
「 Ah, work hard. I will do what I must. 」
Returning to his seat, Hifumi’s threatening words went unheard.

Sitting down at his former seat, Hifumi drank the lukewarm black tea in a gulp.
「 …. We heard it 」
Hearing Kasha’s words, Hifumi caught her reproachful gaze with a smile.
「 Ah, is that so. It looks like things will be fun in the future. 」
「 Fun? 」
「 I can kill anyone that points their weapon at me. Won’t that be fun. Like hell I’m not gonna cause trouble! 」
The excitement in Hifumi’s heart was clearly visible to everyone, like the expression of a child on a picnic.

「 Master, we were chosen among slaves who can fight. Is it that we were bought for the sake of protecting master’s body? 」
To Origa’s question, Hifumi shook his head.

「 I specified that they should be able to fight to protect themselves. It is a waste to let someone else kill my prey. 」

According to Hifumi’s policy, anyone who attacks him, commits a crime in front of him, will be killed.He will kill, but…..rationally. He will persist to that standard.

「 Then, for what were we bought for? Though we have to travel, just master’s strength alone, it shouldn’t be a problem? 」

「 I told you I was from another world right? I know nothing about this world. I haven’t even seen the land outside this city, much less other countries. Even the values of gold and silver coins is mystery to me. 」

So, Hifumi continued,
「 I want a companion in this world to explain that. A slave was the simplest solution because betrayal is not an option. 」

「 Why us? 」
Hifumi grinned.

「 You two seemed to be the strongest among that lot. Two people, backing each other up is better in a fight. How sad that I am chased, so that there are more chances to fight. As such, teamwork increases the possibility of surviving greatly. 」

To Hifumi’s excitement at any imminent battles, the two slaves cannot help but be nervous.

「 We understand that fighting is necessary. However, as we are now, we do not have any weapons. Master, please understand the situation… 」( Kasha )
「 Understood. After this, we will go to buy equipment. Young girls can’t wear these clothes indefinitely. 」
「 …….Thank you very much… 」(Origa)

Kasha was uneasy when Origa blushed. Unaware, Origa was getting accustomed to this different existence Hifumi.

「 Be that as it may, 」
Hifumi soliloquised sighing.
「 It is I who is the victim. 」
「 The fellow who debates over lives like this, who is the victim! 」
To Kasha’s tsukkomi, the Knight sitting nearby reflexively gave a thumbs up.

「 Umu…. 」
「 Master, is something wrong? 」
Leaving the store, Origa asked doubtfully on hearing Hifumi groan.
With glossy eyes and white skin, resembling a doll, Hifumi said
「 The number of those guys letting out bloodthirst wildly has doubled, maybe about 10 of them. 」

Surprisingly impatient, he said delightfully.
「 Eh, then….. 」
The weaponless Kasha looked around uneasily.
「 For the time being, we can reel them in. You will observe how I kill. Oi! 」
Hifumi beckoned to the previously concealed Knight, who reluctantly approached. The pride of the Intelligence force is already tattered.

「 Prohibited from attacking, yet carrying weapons?  Sorry, but can you do something? 」(TN: I’m quite sure I botched the second part of this line.)

Though a sudden request, when the Knight realised that the group outside meant nothing to Hifumi, he agreed.
「 Name? 」
「 …..Midas. 」
「 Then, Midas, do you know of any blind alleys nearby? 」

Guided by Midas for about 15 minutes, the noise of the store street changed and the scenery shifted to a quiet residential street.
The stonework of the buildings differed from the street of shops, the 3-storey and 4-storey buildings increased. The castle town has a large population, the housing complexes may increase.
The street being dim, naturally the crowd is scarce. Similar to a commercial district, the ground is paved with stone, though the surface is rougher.

「 Here. 」

Midas urged while prompting, 10 metres ahead was the building wall culminating in a dead end.
At that moment, a sound was heard cutting through the air.

The arrow that came flying, was knocked down by Hifumi’s katana.
Using the night, the arrow was painted black, it’s tip wet.

「 At last, you appear. 」

With Midas and the other two ahead of him, Hifumi saw the people who entered the alley from the back.
There are nine people. Though all members seemed to be wearing civilian clothes, their eyes are bitter.
The street is really narrow, only the two in front charge forward.
Holding black knives, without a single word, they mutually understand each other only with glances.

They seem experienced. They don’t seem to be mere hooligans after money.

Guessing that the opponents were professionals, Hifumi asked himself why he was inadvertently glad. In his original world, he would not be interested in the fight, but here, he felt that some kind of restraint had come off.
But it’s not an unpleasant feeling.
Or rather, with the exception of occasional brawls and matches, Hifumi’s true character held in check, by fighting here, has most likely surfaced in this world.

Casually swatting the approaching knife-wielding hand to the side, it ended up in the other man’s chest, as though planned from the beginning.
The man released the knife in surprise and promptly had his arm joints broken. Thrown to the ground face-first, his skull broke on the pavement.
Though two people instantly died, the next assassin approached without flinching.
Calmly pulling out his katana, Hifumi slit the wrist of the man in front, and continuing on, cut his throat.
Ignoring the man spraying blood from his throat, Hifumi crushed the next man’s toes with his heel, his katana piercing through the staggered man’s chest.
Hifumi rammed the chest of an opponent coming from the side with his shoulder, passed by while piercing his heart.

「 There are four people remaining. 」
Languidly lowering the blade soaked in blood, the murderous demon laughed.
「 Come quickly. I want to kill. 」

 


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